The Smartest Way To Hit The Salad Bar At A Brazilian Barbecue

Brazilian steakhouses, also known as churrascarias, were inspired by gauchos working in Southern Brazil during the 19th century. These industrious cowboys would cook skewers of meat over an open flame and share them with others. This cooking method, known as churrasco, brought out the rich, delicious flavors of different cuts of meat and proved to be a huge hit with all who sampled them.

Later in the '40s, Brazil began to see an influx of neighborhood churrasco restaurants throughout many regions of the country. The concept eventually made its way to the U.S. in the '90s, albeit with a more sophisticated and elegant air within dining establishments. However, meat remains the defining factor within churrascarias, and anyone who's ever been to one can tell you it takes an Olympic-level appetite to sample all the tasty selections that arrive at the table. As a result, diners can find themselves in a real predicament if they don't develop a solid plan of attack.

How to eat like a churrascaria pro

A good strategy can help you eat your way through the many delectable dishes offered by Brazilian barbecue restaurants like H&H Steakhouse in Beverly Hills. One major factor to consider is the salad bar, which is brimming with tempting items. Along with the selection of vegetables and salad fixings, many churrascaria salad bars offer dishes like feijoada (a delectable black bean stew made with smoked pork and beef), rice, and even sugar-coated bacon. However, going full tilt at the salad bar will prevent you from sampling the many perfectly cooked meats these establishments are best known for.

In this case, choose wisely at the salad bar to save room for the full churrascaria experience. Stick with vegetables, avoid oily dressing, and limit your intake of heavy items that will make you feel fuller faster. If you're looking for a less intense experience, many restaurants provide diners with the option of eating from the salad bar exclusively. For instance, the H&H Steakhouse dinner menu lists an organic salad bar option for just $34. It also helps to know the different types of meat served at these establishments to hone your strategy even further.

Only the finest cuts of meat for churrascarias

Some of the best steaks and other cuts of beef are found at Brazilian churrascarias. Picanha is a fatty, tender cut of meat taken from the rump of the cow and typically served with beans and rice. It's usually the biggest crowd-pleaser at Brazilian steakhouses thanks to the amazing flavors and textures. If you're looking to really indulge your senses, baby beef is another great selection to sample. Sourced from young cows, baby beef is taken from the tenderloin and is much leaner than picanha, which makes it a real delicacy.

Brazilian barbecue restaurants also carry more conventional cuts of beef, including top sirloin and filet mignon. Both are expertly cooked and seasoned to perfection to ensure a prime culinary experience. Churrascarias also feature other great types of meat, including pork. For instance, lombo is pork loin that's skewered and coated with a crust of parmesan cheese. No matter which option you choose, you're sure to leave the churrascaria fully satiated and badly in need of a nap.